Some pictures of my stay at my parents in Aberystwyth.
Wilf and my dad enjoyed playing the organ together, in fact I'm not sure who had more fun. They played together day after day. Special moments I tried to steal and freeze in time.
My 16 year old sister Serin (who claims she isn't good with emotions) made me cup of tea after cup of tea and assured me when I cried that she didn't think I was a horrible mother. Who played with Wilf and shared with him special dolls from her childhood and sang to him in Welsh.
Wilf the morning he turned eleven months playing with my dad's childhood teddy bear Bengie who is almost fifty years old and handmade by my dad's mum.
Bengie and my childhood doll (although I am a little confused as I'm sure my doll had big red face paint spots on her from when we suffered chicken pox together) aaaand I thought she was lost on the train..is this an impostor? mum?
I am so proud of my childhood and the way I was raised. My parents instilled in me that the most important thing in life was to be a good and kind person. I remember once asking my dad if I was pretty and him telling me that looks were irrelevant, that the most important thing in life was to be a good person.
Although i would say I am inspired to be successful in what I do, the motives behind it have always been personal success and not a monetary gain. My parents didn't spoil me with material possessions and encouraged me to be creative in the absence of distractions like TV (although we watched a little, mainly Sesame Street and Henry's Cat!). We never had money growing up but it never was an issue. When I was younger I desperately wanted Barbies and My Little Ponies but when I wasn't allowed these I created my own, hand drawn and cut out. I called them my 'paper people' and they lived in a folder, animals and houses and people with extensive wardrobes that could be replenished with the aid of a box of coloured pencils. My parents always encouraged me with my goal to become an 'artist' and I truly believe what you are happiest doing at five will probably be what you are happiest doing as an adult.
Although the world and technology have moved on since I was a child I do hope to instil in Wilf similar morals (although we will let him watch some TV and I think some Iphone apps are actually really great for kids). That imagination, music, food and laughter are what we should live and thrive on. Seeing my family and how incredible and mature my sister and brother are grounds me and reminds me of what life is about. It made me return to Bristol remembering that what was most important in life was the love Tom, Wilf and I have for each other and what an incredible unit we are. That despite the really really tough times (and there have been a few) we are doing this together and we are raising the most beautiful little soul.
p.s another great thing my parents told me (when reading Roal Dahl) is that the line '"If a person has ugly thoughts, it begins to show on the face. And when that person has ugly thoughts every day, every week, every year, the face gets uglier and uglier until it looks so ugly you can hardly bear to look at it." was true. Slightly terrifying of course but for many years the moment I felt jealously or anger at someone I thought upon those lines and hurriedly rearranged my thoughts. To this day when I feel anger towards someones unreasonable behavoir I think about this saying, perhaps it only worked/works as it appeals to my vanity!